Health

Precision Medicine to Transform Your Life

Child: Welcome to my Mommy’s podcast.

 

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Katie: Hello, and welcome to the “Wellness Mama” podcast. I’m Katie from WellnessMama.com and Wellnesse.com, that’s wellness with an E on the end. And this episode was a really exciting one for me because I’m with someone who has influenced my life pretty dramatically. And I actually got to have an amazing conversation with him. I’m here with Tony Robbins, who you’ve probably heard his name before, but if you haven’t, he is an entrepreneur, #1 New York Times bestselling author many times over, a philanthropist honored by Accenture as one of the “Top 50 Business Intellectuals in the World,” and he’s the leader that leaders call upon.

 

He’s consulted with and coached some of the world’s greatest athletes, entertainers, CEOs, even presidents, and he’s a founder, partner, or investor in over 100 privately held businesses throughout the country and around the world. And I especially love his work on mindset and how his philanthropy and partnership with Feeding America, which influenced him as a child, has provided more than now 850 million meals and is on track to provide a billion meals to people in need by 2025.

 

This is a very wide-ranging episode. We talk a lot about his new book, “Life Force,” which I highly recommend. But he talks about so many aspects of this cutting-edge things we can do to improve our health as well as common easy things that we can do that make a big difference. A lot of shocking new research that he delves into, the seven master genes that influence mitochondria and energy, how sirtuins increase energy, longevity, and prevent disease. What he uses daily. A lot of new research about sauna use, disease, sleep, heart attacks, so many different things. And then we end with a really, really important conversation related to mindset and just how profound that is from a physical health perspective, of course, and crosses over into many other areas of life as well. Like I said, I really enjoyed this conversation. It was a joy to get to talk to Tony, and I hope that you enjoy our conversation as much as I did. Tony Robbins, welcome to the podcast.

 

Tony: Thanks for having me on, Katie. Nice to see you.

 

Katie: Nice to see you, as well. And I’m really excited to actually get to chat with something with you I’ve not learned from you yet, I’ve learned quite a bit from you over the years and from your writing. So, to start broad, I would love to hear what the impetus for this particular book was. I feel like you have a really unique gift for being able to take a ton of information and distill it down to really important action steps, and it seems like that you’ve done it again with this topic. But what was the motivating?

 

Tony: Well, thank you. Well, you know, my entire life has been obsessed with looking at how can you help people improve their life. And most people kind of major in minor things, they know more about, you know, an actress’ life than they know about their own. And so I really try to focus on the things that matter over my life, your body obviously, your emotions, your relationships, your finances, your career, and of course the spiritual side of life.

 

And, you know, for about 10 years, since 2008, 10 years after that, I focused on money because I saw so many people’s lives devastated. And the way I did it is the same way I attack this. I went and interviewed 50 of the smartest financial people in the world, the Warren Buffetts, the Ray Dalios, the Carl Icahns. And, you know, I’m really proud of that work. Wrote two number one New York Times Best Sellers and took complex things, made them simple. But the reason that I wanted to go for this is because, you know, there’s an old phrase that says, you know, “A person who has health has a million dreams, a person without it has one.” And the richest man in the graveyard is not going to make you happy.

 

And so I really wanted to go to 150 doctors this time, scientists, Nobel laureates. And… Because there is a breakthrough, set a of breakthroughs are happening in medicine right now like never in our lives. The same technology that now allows you to have a phone in your pocket that’s, you know, 100 times stronger than what put the man on the moon is now available to us because our bodies are code. And there are breakthroughs happening right now that you would think would happen 20 or 30 years in the future that are either available right now or in the next 24 to 36 months.

 

So, I want to bring that forward. But it went beyond, honestly, just my own desire to help, it was also because I had a, you know, career injury that could have ended my life, could have ended my life at least as I understand it or know it. I’ve had many experiences, and we can talk about them if you want, but one of the most important ones for me was being able to figure out what to do after I tore my rotator cuffs. It doesn’t sound like a big deal, but four to six months of recovery for that. And, you know, I go to 115 cities usually, 10 to 15 countries a year, you know, doing these events 12, 14 hours a day. And there’s just no way I could do that with one arm tied to the side of me, effectively, and healing.

 

But also, then I was diagnosed with spinal stenosis. And I don’t know if you’re familiar with it, but it’s pretty brutal. I’ve had pain for 14 years and they just showed me my spine and said, “Life as you know it is over.” This is literally what the doctor said to me, I had an interesting communication path. But he said, you know, “No more snowboarding,” no more this, no more that. Because I had the snowboarding accident and he said, “No more jumping. Life as you know it is over.” And I just wasn’t willing to accept that. So, I started looking for options and I went to all these surgeons, all of them, “Surgery, surgery, surgery.” And, “Rehab. At the end of rehab, you might not be able to lift your shoulder, you know, above your arm. You can’t necessarily, it could tear again.”

 

And so I started thinking about stem cells are everywhere and it’s kind of the Wild West out there. So, I went to a dear friend of mine, who’s now my coauthor, Dr. Peter Diamandis, who’s both a rocket scientist and an MD from Harvard. And then he said, “The person you got to talk to is Dr. Bob Hariri,” who’s one of the top, you know, neurosurgeons in the world. And I said, “He’s a neurosurgeon.” He goes, “No, he’s one of the earliest people that found stem cells.”

 

And it’s kind of like saying, you know, “I want you to talk to my friend LeBron James,” that’s how incredible this man is. He sat down with me and he said, “Tony, you can always go back to the surgery. You need the right stem cells.” He taught me where to go, I went and did stem cell therapy, three days of IV and a couple shots. First day I felt barely anything, a little tired. The second day, I felt no pain in my spine when I woke up for the first time in 14 years. I was not expecting that. And within a week, my shoulder was absolutely perfect. I have the MRI, no surgery, no breakdown.

 

And so that put me… Like, I got obsessed. If you can imagine, Katie. Because it’s like, “I want to know everything about stem cells.” And then it got bigger than stem cells. Because these breakthroughs that I’m talking about are happening in all forms of regenerative medicine. And I got invited by the Pope to come and speak. Believe it or not the Pope does the most powerful regenerative medicine conference every two years, all the best doctors on earth. Because he sees stem cells, it’s not fetal cells of course, but stem cells as being this incredible breakthrough. And so he wants the world to have these tools for healing.

 

And I met people that have been sent home to die because of various cancers and they just didn’t give up, and they tried some of these new therapies with some of these new breakthrough doctors and they’re completely healed 5 years later, 10 years later. I met an 11-year-old boy that at 4 years old was told he had a 5% chance to live, stem cells saved his life. He’s 11 years old, he got them from his sister. Pretty amazing. And just so much emotion as, like, “I want the world to know this.”

 

So, I went on this three-year journey of finding all the best of the best, these 150 doctors, and put in this book. And I’m donating all the profits from this book, so you know also. I was fed when I was a little boy, when we had no food, at Thanksgiving. And so I fed two families, four, I finally got to four million a year. And then a few years ago, when I was doing this money book, I decided, you know, “What if I fed as many people in a year as I’ve fed my whole life?,” which is 42 million. And I said, “What if I fed 100 million?” So, now I’m feeding 100 million a year, I committed to a billion meals, we’re at 850 million meals. So, 20 million meals will come out of this, and a balance of it goes to take care of research for Alzheimer’s, cancer, and heart disease.

 

So, I’m excited about getting this in people’s hands. It’s like the ultimate guidebook for every answer you can imagine of the cutting-edge alternatives you have to both prevent some of these problems and also how to increase your energy, which I know every mom needs. I have a…you know, COVID was good to us in one way in that I had a chance to be home and we have now a 9…well, actually, today a 10-month-old child. So, I have five kids and five grandkids, a 48-year-old daughter and a 10-month-old. I need all the energy I can get. So, everything in this book I’m applying for my own life.

 

Katie: Wow, that’s amazing. And I think you’re right. What I’ve noticed is there’s so many breakthroughs happening constantly in health and medicine right now, but it seems to take decades usually for them to actually trickle down into common practice. But we’re seeing that switch, thanks to things like technology, of availability for the average consumer, there’s just a lot to navigate. And it can seem very overwhelming, with the amount of data you encounter when you just start going down those research pathways.

 

And I love the concept you talk about, about becoming CEO of your own health. And I’ve talked to moms about this quite a bit, of, you know, if you run your household like you would run a company and you apply systems and you have targets and everything is measured, it takes the stress away because you have a system. And I love that you apply this concept to health, as well. So, can you talk a little bit more in depth about what you mean by becoming the CEO of your own health?

 

Tony: Well, I’ll tell you where it starts, it starts with overcoming the fear by really educating yourself. I’ll take you back a little bit. When I was really young, just a kid, I started out, I worked 20-hour days. And I care about people immensely, and you can’t fake that when you’re doing 20-hour days. And so I built…you know, I built a good business and reputation and became very successful, and all of a sudden I was coaching some of the greatest athletes in the world and things of that nature. It was wild. And then all of a sudden, I don’t know…you know, we all have this…you know, this old brain, you know, the survival brain. And, I don’t know, in those days I hadn’t learned how to manage it very well because all of a sudden I started to get this fear that I was going to die young, that I had all this success and was going to die young.

 

And I started dreaming about it. And it wasn’t like I was going to die slow…or, I should say, fast, like a…you know, hit by a car. It was like slow and painful with cancer. And, you know, when you obsess about something and you’re trying not to, it seems to still be there. And after a while, you know, I found that experience in my own life. And the first time in my own life was not me, it was my girlfriend at the time. She came home crying uncontrollably and said, you know, “My mom has got cancer. They told her that she’s got nine weeks to live and sent her home to die.”

 

And so my whole life has been, you know, that there are role models out there. If anyone has ever done anything, there’s a pathway to power if more than one person has done it. And there are a lot of people who’ve actually been at stage three or stage four cancer and had it eliminated from their body. And I was like, “I’m going to read everything,” because I was a speed reader, I just obsess. So, if it was me, I probably wouldn’t have done as much. But, boy, for somebody else, man, I’m going to deliver for Mama.

 

And I came across a book called One Answer to Cancer, it’s written by this dentist who had pancreatic cancer. Which, I’m sure you probably know, is the most deadly. They sent him to live, told him he had six weeks to live. And he cleansed his body through this detoxification process and used the pancreatic enzymes and he was healthy 20 years later. And so I wouldn’t recommend that book today, there are better approaches, but it was a great book. I gave her As a Man Thinketh so she could work on her head. And she wasn’t willing to give up. And she applied it, and within a few weeks she started feeling better.

 

She’d had a tumor on the back of her shoulder and in her feminine organs. And the change was so radical, and she was still alive six weeks later, that the doctors started saying, “We ought to do exploratory surgery and see what’s going on.” So, at eight weeks they did the surgery and all they found left in her body was something the size of the end of my pinkie’s fingernail, literally. And the doctor said, “This is a miracle.” And she said, “Well, it is a miracle, but let me tell you what I did.” And he goes, “No, no. This is spontaneous remission, you can’t explain this.” And she began to speak at churches. And she’s now in her 80s, 40 years later, still alive today.

 

So, that kind of shifted my psychology from one of fear to “there are answers.” And it made me take care of my own health. And then I went to work. You know, in the work that I do, I’m on stage for 12, 13 hours a day, 4, 5 days in a row. I got a stadium of 15,000 people who normally wouldn’t sit for three hours for a movie and I’ve got to keep them completely engaged. So, I became a biohacker. Anything I could do that would allow me to have more energy, more strength, more vitality.

 

And so I’ve been doing that for decades. I’m now 62 years old in a week or two here. And so in order to keep up with that. And, you know, my body does insane things. I jump 1,000 times in a day, to give you perspective. That literally is, I weigh 282 pounds, the doctor is explaining when you come down, it’s four times your body weight. So, 1,000 jumps times 1,000 pounds is a million pounds of pressure on my body. I burn 11,300 calories. I’m telling you this not to impress you, but impress upon you I needed real answers to figure out what to do.

 

And then, I’m doing so great, and all of a sudden, you know, I go for a physical, I’m a helicopter pilot, as well, and this doctor calls and leaves a message and says, “It’s an emergency, I have to speak to you.” And I don’t know about you, but my mind, after all those years, finally runs back to, “Oh my god, you know, I’ve been taking such good care of myself. Is it all the plane flights, am I exposed to too much radiation, do I have cancer?” But I couldn’t call the guy, it was midnight when I got the message. So, I shut my brain off and said, “I’ll deal with it in the morning.”

 

And I wake up the next morning and the guy says, “You have a tumor in your brain, your pituitary.” And I was like, “How could you possibly know that from a blood test? I’m totally healthy. I went and I was coming to you just to qualify for, you know, my renewal of my license.” And he said, “Well, you have a huge amount of growth hormone in your body.” And I said, “Well, how did you figure that out?” You know, I was 5’1″ in high school, my sophomore year I’m 6’7″, I got hands bigger than people’s heads, size 16 shoe. And he’s like, “Well, I’m just telling you. You have gigantism and you have this pituitary tumor.”

 

And so he wanted to immediately take me in for surgery and I said, “Well, what are the side effects?” He said, “Well, you can die. But the most…probably the most common one is your biochemistry, your hormones become imbalanced and you’re not going to feel anywhere near the energy you have today, but you’ll live.” And I said, “Well, you know, can I get a second opinion?” And, you know, most doctors are really great with that today, but this man was not, he did not have the bedside manner and he just refused to even refer somebody. So, I blew it off, I went off and said, “I’m not going to worry about this,” I was doing this seminar in the south of France. When a seminar is done, boy, that mind was back going again.

 

And so I eventually went in and I did the MRI, found out I had a pituitary, he wanted to cut it. I went to a doctor in Boston who…you know, who uses chemistry and he looked at it and he had a totally different approach. Sweetest man you could imagine, really connected. He said, “Tony, you have it, but you’re crazy to do surgery. Don’t do surgery, it’s too risky. Go to Switzerland and do these injections once every six months, it will keep your heart valves from growing.” And I said, “Well, I talk to the other guy, he wants to cut. I talk to you, you want to drug me.” And he goes, “Well, the baker wants to bake, the surgeon wants to cut.” He goes, “That’s how it works, Tony.” But he was so wonderful.

 

And I said, “Well, what if I did nothing?” He said, “Well”… I said, “Because right now you told me there’s no side effects in my body. Why do we got to do something?” He goes, “Well, just to be certain.” I said, “Well, there’s a price to certainty. What if the drug does something on the side?” He goes, “It doesn’t.” He goes, “But you could do it.”

 

So, I went to six doctors, to finish the story for you. And one finally said, “Tony, you have elevated growth hormone, no question.” But he said, “Tony, I know guys that are bodybuilders that pay $1,200 a month for this extra hormone that you’re getting here.” He said, “I really think it helps you repair from the insanity of what you do with your body.” And so I was 32 at the time, I’m 62, so a lot of years without any problems whatsoever. I do monitor and it’s there. So, that changed my whole psychology to saying, “There’s got to be answers.”

 

And then here’s the final one and why I really wrote this book as a final step. About four years ago I have this accident and tear my shoulder, and it’s like, “I got to have answers.” And so that shifted me from, “Let me just accept what people say.” I mean, I don’t know if you’re familiar with it, but there was a study done, you know, at the Mayo Clinic back in 2017 and they tell everyone to get a second opinion. Because what they found, out of 287 people they analyzed, only 12% of the time was the first and second diagnosis the same. That means 88% of the time it was different. And by getting multiple diagnoses, it refined it, as a minimum, in two-thirds the cases.

 

So, I’ve really learned you’ve got to get a second opinion, you’ve got to go to the very best that are out there. And it’s not because doctors aren’t talented. I mean, they’re the most dedicated people you can imagine. But you’ve got to imagine the half-life of a medical education, according to Harvard in 2017, was 18 to 24 months. Which means within 18 to 24 months half of what they learned is out of date. So, the pharmaceutical salesman is the one that educates them.

 

And so that’s why we run into a lot of challenges that we do today. But, you know, a doctor is like a person… I try to explain it to people. It’s like the most dedicated person and they’re walking along the riverbed and they hear somebody screaming that they’re…you know, they’re drowning. And the doctor doesn’t care about himself. He jumps in, he pulls the person out, gives them mouth to mouth, saves them. And just as he saves them, he hears two more screams. Jumps and saves the first, saves the second. Then four more screams. But you don’t have time to go upstream and see who’s throwing them in.

 

So, this book is to kind of show you what’s upstream throwing them in and what are the latest breakthroughs that can help you in any area. And one of the first areas people should really look at is, you know, diagnosing things in advance, just doing a normal physical where somebody taps on your knee and looks in your throat and your ears. I mean, that was done 80 years ago, 100 years ago. You wouldn’t use a phone from 10 years ago. And so there is technology now that can absolutely save your life.

 

So, I wrote this book not just for the individual, but really to something that would improve the quality of your life massively, energy, strength, but also protect you and perhaps save the life of you or someone you really love. Because we all know somebody… I mean, you know, the world is divided right now. But the one thing we’re unified on is we want to protect our families and our friends and ourselves. And we’ve all had people get sick, we’ve all had people die. And so it’s like we deserve to know what’s out there.

 

And there are some simple… I’ll just give you one and I’ll shut up, because I’ve been talking for a bit here, I’m so passionate about this. But, like, there’s a new cancer test developed by a doctor whose wife died of cancer. Most of the people in this book, by the way, these heroes, are people that wouldn’t accept the standard of care because they lost…about 90% of them lost somebody in their life and it pushed them to work and use their brain in ways no one else has and create these breakthroughs.

 

So, right now, there are a lot of, you know, tests, there are test for mammograms, there’s tests for colon cancer, right? But most of the things that kill people are because you hear about them when they’re on third and fourth stage. And you hear about them then because there are no tests for them.

 

So, now, a combination of full-body MRI and this blood tests shows you 50 different cancers. And you can catch a cancer when there are zero symptoms. So, here’s a statistic that the, you know, Cancer Society has found. After looking at 100,000 people, if you catch something at stage three or four, there’s an 80% chance you won’t make it. Now, there are some beautiful exceptions and this book is filled with the people that turned that around. But if you catch it at stage one or two, there’s an 80% chance you’re going to live, in some cases 99% chance that you’re going to live.

 

So, it’s like I didn’t used to want to be the person to do testing, but I’ve found, with today’s testing, you can catch something when it’s little. You want to kill the monster when it’s a baby, not when it’s Godzilla taking your family or taking your life.

 

Katie: That’s a great point. And I love the upstream analogy. I’ve said a lot before on this podcast that we are each our own primary healthcare provider. And certainly, the best outcomes come in partnership with people who are specialists in whatever area. But, to your point, doctors, while they have huge hearts, are often extremely overwhelmed working within a system that has a lot of things going on. And I’ve talked to many doctors who are as frustrated as patients. But it really brings up that idea that you have to advocate for yourself and research for yourself, you can’t outsource a vested interest in your own health. No doctor can know your body as well as you can. And now, thanks to these tools, we have the ability to actually know our bodies in a way we never have before, which is amazing. And I want to go deeper on that.

 

But, before we do, I’ve read, and now you’ve explained, some of these amazing stats about what you go through in a day on stage. I would just love to hear some of your favorite biohacks or the things that you now routinely do to keep your energy up.

 

Tony: Well, one of the most powerful things is, if you understand the source of energy, as most people know, is their mitochondria, those little energy factories that are in every cell of your body. And they make something called ATP, which is the battery storage. And without that, we die. So, if somebody takes cyanide, for example, the reason they die within 30 seconds is it stops the oxygen. And you need oxygen in order for ATP to be made. So, you literally have no energy, the organs shut down and your body shuts down. But there have been some incredible breakthroughs in understanding how that works now.

 

And so there are these seven genes that are called sirtuins. And these master genes do two things that are absolutely critical. The first thing they do is they feed your mitochondria, they help them to take food and convert it into energy, which is critical to every bit of energy. If you’re a mom and you’re doing all the things you’re doing, I know because I got my wife here and I’m the dad here and I’m, boy, with a little 10-month-old running around now mobile, I know what that means in energy and so forth. But the bottom line is these make that energy happen. They also reduce inflation, which is the basis…the early stage of almost every disease. They also turn on or turn off various genes in your body, and that’s what makes people age too soon or stay young longer. And then they have a second task to do, which is they clean up your DNA.

 

All this comes from these things called sirtuins. It’s a breakthrough that came from a Harvard researcher, you know, who’s just a brilliant man. He’s 53 years old in terms of his physical age, but he’s 33 years old in his chemical age, or his body age. In other words, chronologically he’s one age. And I’ve learned what he did and I’m 62, but I’m 51 in my body now. And I’m looking to get it down to 40, is my target. But the way you do it is these sirtuins need something called NAD+.

 

I know this sounds complex, but think of genes that have all this power to make you strong and alive and energetic, but they need NAD+. And a lot of people have heard of this, but NAD+ needs…it’s the fuel, but it needs a precursor called NMN, like “never mother never.” And this, if you go in the marketplace, we went in the marketplace when we were doing our research, went to six companies, none of them had any NMN in it. And so, you know, some people are thieves, but most of it is coming from China. And what happens is it breaks down within 30 days. But there’s been a breakthrough.

 

And here’s the breakthrough. First of all, when they give NMN, so the source of energy for NAD+ that makes these master genes do their job, when they give it to animals, like mice for example, they live 30% longer. If you give an old mouse, which is like a 70-year-old mouse is like a 20, 24-month-old mouse, old mouse, and you let him get on a treadmill, they’ll do about a quarter of a kilometer. A young mouse can do a full kilometer, four times as much. When they give them this NMN, the old mice, within 15 days, are running two and three kilometers, 200% to 300% more than a young mouse.

 

What sounds interesting… Because not all mice studies, as I’m sure you know, transfer to humans. But it was just leaked, it was in the Daily Mail about a week ago, and a few weeks back it was in Boston in the newspaper. The special forces, for two years, had been working with this new form of NMN that doesn’t break down. It’s designed by a company called Metrotech. And I met the owners and founders, I actually invest in the company because I was so blown away. But this particular NMN absorbs 300% to 400%. And here’s what they found. Massive changes. These are, you know, special forces individuals, the best, most fit people you can imagine. Massive increases in their endurance, massive increases in their ability to build muscle, huge improvements in their cognitive capacity. I met a 72-year-old guy that hasn’t played chess, he was a world-class chess player, and he hasn’t played chess in 12 years and he’s playing chess again competitively, to give you an idea.

 

And this is not a nutraceutical, this is going through the FDA. So, this is one of those things that will be available in about 18 months to 24 months, to give you an idea, based where it is, but it is life-changing. So, it will keep your DNA solid, meaning clean up your DNA. Because as you age, you accumulate, you know, the breakdowns of DNA. So, it will clean that up, it will enhance your energy, it will reduce your inflammation.

 

So, there are things like that that I’m doing. I do, as my own just daily piece, I have a device called a PEMF, pulse electronic magnetic frequency, device. There’s about 3,000 studies on it. And it allows you…it mends muscles, it helps you with nerves, it helps you with anything you can imagine. So, I use it as, like, a bio-charger, so to speak.

 

I do hyperbaric oxygen. Because I had a huge bout with mercury at one stage, burned a hole in the… You know, I always tell people one of the tests you’ve got to do is a simple blood test, costs next to nothing. But if you’re feeling, like, brain fog…a lot of people think it’s brain fog or exhaustion. Almost always you find there are metals in there that have to be cleansed out. Mine were severe. Like, on a 0 to 5, it was 123. And so it burned a hole in my esophagus, I lost a third of my blood supply. And so for me, it affected even my brain. So, I do hyperbaric oxygen, which has completely transformed my body. I do cryotherapy. I start every day in the cold plunge, whatever, cryotherapy unit.

 

So, like I said, I… You know, and I’ve got a whole set of nutrients that I do that come, you know, from David Sinclair, the same gentleman I told you is, you know, 53 going on 33. And so I have both the nutrient side, the exercise side, the device side. Because, you know, I got to get up and burn 11,300 calories in a day. And if you know lactic acid, if you’re running with a friend and you can’t talk anymore, your lactic acid is at four. I’m at 18 still speaking, he’d never seen anything like it. I have 15 pounds more of lean body mass than the average NFL lineman. So, the demands I make on my body are insane and I’m doing more at 62 than I was doing at 25. So, I’m pretty thrilled with what these breakthroughs have done for me personally and that’s why I want to share them with other people.

 

Katie: Yeah. And I’m a big believer that moms are such a driving force in society and that anything we can do that helps moms and their energy level has positive effects to the entire family.

 

Tony: And our future, right?

 

Katie: Yeah, the children, the future generations. You also talk about the top six killers. And I think there’s definitely the multi-part of this is avoiding the harmful things, and then adding in the things that are really beneficial. Can you just kind of walk us through the highlights of what are the top six killers to avoid?

 

Tony: Yes. Well, you know, if you think about the number one killer, of course, is heart disease. And, you know, when you think about it, most people, you know, one out of two people, are going to encounter it over time, one out of four die of it. And so what you want to do first is prevention.

 

And so there is a brand-new test, it’s quite miraculous. If you go and you’re, you know, 40 years old or older, very often you’ll go get a CT test on your heart. And they have this new thing called a CCTA test. I have a company that does all this type of work, and my partner called me up one day and said, “Tony, you got to come do this test, it’s the first huge breakthrough in cardiology in probably a decade.” And I said, “What is it?” He goes, “Well, we’re going to take your CT.” Which, if you’ve ever seen one, it’s very gray, it’s hard to…it’s easy to misinterpret. And they’re looking to see how much calcium has built up, plaque, in your body, and they give you a score.

 

And he said, “But the problem with that is it’s so inaccurate.” He goes, “What this does, it uses AI and it opens up the arteries digitally and searches and says how much of that plaque, calcium, is now hardened, which means it’s healed, versus what is soft which can break off and they call it the widow-maker, you know, it can cause a heart attack or a stroke.” And I said, “Wow.” I said, “I got to come do it.”

 

And my father-in-law was with me, and he’s just about to turn 80. And he’s a beautiful man and, you know, he built his own business from scratch, self-educated guy, but also he’s done lumber business, so pretty fit guy for, you know, 79, almost 80 years old, he’s 80 now. And I said, “Pops,” I said, “Why don’t you come with me?” I explained what I was going to do. I said, “We’re both old enough that we’re going to have some of those soft plaques, but then they show you what to do.” They can predict a heart attack five years in advance and tell you what to do to prevent it. So, I said, “We’re both going to have some, but they have solutions. Why don’t we do it?” And he goes, “Okay.”

 

And I noticed him kind of, like, everybody telling him, “Organize your affairs, you’re 80 years old,” you know, and that whole mindset, from being this dynamic guy. So, we have this company called Fountain Life, it’s here in Florida and we have them all over the country. Anyway, I took him down, we did the test, my father-in-law was clean as a whistle. I was better than I was five years ago, really good, but he was clean as a whistle. And you cannot imagine what this did to him.

 

And then there’s also…there are some tools that we use with athletes, and I’ve used. You know, like, I had a thing on my ankle that, for 15 years, if I had a massage, “Don’t touch it.” Because it would be like getting the nerve pain through my whole body, like electricity. And they have this new technique where they go in, they scan your body, they see what’s actually going on. And then they… With ultrasound. And then they inject this fluid, and they inject basically the same fluid your baby is in, right? And what happens is it opens up the area and the nerves are free and the muscles are free, the, you know, inflammation is gone. Takes about 10 minutes.

 

And so Dad had a hip problem, so they did his hip while I was there. So, we’re getting on the plane. This is the perfect example of what happens to people, why I tell people, “You go to do the test.” He sits down in the chair across from me, he goes, “You know, Tony, some people talk about living to be 110, 120.” He goes, “I don’t know about that, but, you know, my hip is perfect, I’m walking perfect.” He goes, you know, “My heart is perfect.” He goes, you know, “I could live another 20 years, I could live to 100.” He goes, “You’ve only been married to my daughter for 22 years. I mean, that’s like a lifetime.” And it’s completely changed his perspective just by having this one simple test.

 

So, it’s like…and the book is filled with all the newest breakthroughs, both what to do to prevent, but let’s talk about cancer. Okay? Another big one, obviously. If you look at cancer, and that’s the one that was my fear base, and I know it is for a lot of people. And when I was writing this book, I wanted to know what to focus on. And I put this diagnostics chapter up early because I found people in their 30s are worried about cancer, or worried about Alzheimer’s because they got parents or grandparents that have had that experience, right? But cancer is the biggie that scares people. And, you know, one out of four people, again, are going to see this, about 40% will get diagnosed in their lifetime. But it’s different, it’s young, survivable, like, there are things you can do.

 

So, the first thing is, like, the test I told you about. Right? The GRAIL test. So, you catch something when it’s little. But also broccoli sprouts, I mean, have something in it called, I forget out to pronounce, sulforaphane. I think I’m mispronouncing, I’m sure. But what it does is shows it literally takes 80%, like women with breast cancer, it reduces cancer cells by 80%. There’s many studies on it. I mean, it’s not just breast cancer, it’s one of the most incredible tools you can possibly get. Sulforaphane, I think is how it’s pronounced, is what’s in it.

 

So, stroke is another one. Right? It’s, you know, the same things, the prevention side of what you can do, but also there are cool tools. If you know someone who’s had a stroke, one of the problems is their hands will lock up, they can’t open their fingers, they can’t function. You forget, like, how important this is until you lose it.

 

And there’s a gentleman that was one of the co-creators of Google Glass, he’s a professor in Georgia, and he has created these gloves. And when I first met him, you know, he created the gloves, and the gloves preprogram your subconscious mind. He can have you wear these gloves while you do other things, and it teaches you to play the piano if you’ve never touched it.

 

He showed me a video of this journalist who was very skeptical, and he put the gloves on him and they had a conversation. And the conversation went longer than usual, normally they wear the gloves for like 15 minutes and they sit down and they start to play “Ode to Joy,” and they’ve never touched a piano in their life. And the guy sat down and it’s only supposed to be the first two stanzas, and he played the whole thing. And he’s like, “Is somebody punking me?,” he’s thinking to himself. And it turns out his assistant had programmed the entire song in. This guy, you see this writer’s face, he can’t even believe it. But now they’re taking this way of programming your nervous system and they’re using it to open stroke victims’ hands so now they can function again and turn things around. So many cool tools that are related to stroke.

 

Chronic pain. You know, on the back of my book Jack Nicklaus, who’s probably the greatest golfer of all time. When I was…I was the clean-up speaker at the Vatican, but I went through all the sessions. And in one of the sessions, he got up and said, “Listen. I was told my only choice was spinal fusion.” And, by the way, spinal fusion, your audience should know if they have a father or mother or anybody else that’s out there, or themselves, you know, it only works half the time. And less than 26% of the people in the most recent study, it’s in the book, ever make it back to work. And people who don’t do it, 76% make it back to work. He used stem cells instead. And he couldn’t stand for more than 10 minutes, his pain was so severe. And now at 82 years old he’s playing golf and tennis again, one of the greatest golfers of all time.

 

Cristiano Ronaldo, one of the greatest soccer players of all time, did an endorsement for the book. Because he figured out how to heal, you know, his hamstring in two weeks using stem cells instead of waiting, you know, for two to three months in some cases. So, it’s there.

 

You know, obesity is one of the big killers, obviously, today. It’s kind of crazy. 75%, literally 75%, of Americans are either overweight or obese. And it’s just our environment, the food environment has changed. I don’t know if you’re old enough to remember when a Coke was in a little bottle about this size instead of a Slurpee-size thing that’s bigger than your stomach, you know. But the food environment has changed. People’s choices have changed. We’re less mobile. And, you know, right now diabetes is completely out of control in this country, and child diabetes has exploded. At type two diabetes, people…doctors will tell you, “It’s not curable, you got to learn to manage it and live with it, and hopefully you won’t go blind or you won’t lose your toes.” I mean, it’s pretty horrific and it’s just not true.

 

The latest research out of London shows you can cure type two diabetes beyond a shadow of a doubt. There’s fat in your liver. And by a reduction of between 23 and 28 pounds, it will get that out of your liver and all of a sudden insulin starts balancing again and diabetes goes away. I mean, most people have no clue this is true.

 

So, again, in the book everything is not my opinion, everything is from the best scientists and doctors in the world, and annotated with examples. So, you say, “I have this problem, where do I go?” “Here’s five solutions and here are the best doctors in the world that do this and here’s how you can reach them or make connection to them.” So, think of it like…kind of like, you know, a guidebook.

 

Alzheimer’s. This is the one that, you know, my father died of Alzheimer’s. And, you know, there’s very few diseases that scare people, I think it’s up there with cancer, because it wipes out identity. You know, all of a sudden your parent doesn’t know who you are and it’s a really scary situation. And there’s one drug was recently approved, and it’s very controversial because it didn’t get approved by all the people. It can cause some brain bleeding, its effectiveness is questionable, its sales have been questionable. But what’s really nice is there are some brand-new breakthroughs that are starting to happen that are on the near horizon that are really cool.

 

So, there’s things you can do to prevent, again, I talk about. But if it’s there, things that can give you hope. There’s a group out of…that was actually funded by the people at Google and they’ve, at least with mice, found something no one else has found. Most people believe when you get Alzheimer’s, those brain cells are gone, those memories are gone, that part is over. What they’ve proven is it’s not true, at least in animals, and so they assume the same as humans.

 

What’s happened is the brain is under so much neuroinflammation, so much stress, that the communication between the brain cells is not working. And by…there’s a new drug they’ve used. And by utilizing it, at least in mice so far, they’ve been able to get these mice, who had no memory of, you know, being able to go through a…you know, a channel, have been able to recover those memories perfectly and compete with younger mice that don’t have those problems at all.

 

So, there are some real exciting breakthroughs. There’s a doctor named Dr. Tanzi, who’s probably the best in the world, he’s working on this, kind of a, Lipitor drug, but for the neuroinflammation in the brain. And he is probably on a cutting edge.

 

So, those are the areas that are some of the big diseases. So, the way I designed the book, I teach you all these cool new tips that are available. Then, I show you all the practical things, sleep, your body, your emotions, that make all the difference. And then I give you the big six and show you how the previous things I told you are being applied in that area, things like, you know, there are literally diseases being cured right now by gene editing and gene therapy. There’s a young man that was on “America’s Got Talent” who was blind and he can see now. I mean, there’s just crazy changes that are happening. You know, people with sickle cell anemia, they’re curing it now, literally going in and editing our genes.

 

And everything is happening so rapidly, Katie. Because, you know, think about it. Technology, about every 18 months, doubles in its capacity and halves in its cost. Well, we are nothing but code. And so that’s happening now. Plus, you have all these multibillionaires that have more money than god, and the one thing they want now is great health and vitality long-term. They want to be around as long as they can. So, more money is being spent than any time in history and there’s more technology, so breakthroughs are happening. But most people won’t hear about it for a decade, but some of these things are literally available right now.

 

I’ll give you one right now. If you have arthritis, or if you have someone you care about who has arthritis… That’s why I said I wrote this book for you and the people you love. There is a company right now in its third stage with the FDA. The first stage is safety, the second stage is efficacy, and the third is efficacy at scale. And then, if it goes through that, you get approved. So, it’s in its final stage, should be approved, they believe, by the end of this year or the beginning of next. Single injection, stimulates your own stem cells, and it regrows all your tendons in your body over 11 months. And literally no more arthritis. But better than that, it’s using your original genome, right? So, it’s got the original uncorrupted DNA that it triggers. So, you get, like, 16-year-old tendons.

 

I mean, there’s things that are happening right now that are, like, they sound like science fiction or a miracle, and they pretty much are, but they’re available either right now or…all the things in the book are either now or 12 to 36 months ahead so you’re prepared.

 

Katie: Wow. Talking about all the rates of all of these big killers on the rise, that was actually the reason I started Wellness Mama, was reading when my first child was a newborn that his generation was going to be the first one in two centuries to have a shorter life expectancy than their parents. And I decided that wasn’t good enough and I think it was changeable, and we’re seeing that now play out.

 

And I’m glad you brought up genes, because you also talk about how genes are not your destiny. And I think this is an area people are more familiar with a little bit, they can get genetic testing done, you can run your genes and have access to a lot of that. But I’ve also seen people then hyper-fixate on particular genes or identify with a particular problem, or, “I have MTHFR,” and over-supplement one thing and throw a lot of other things out of balance. So, I’d love to hear your take on why you say genes are not your destiny, and maybe some practical examples of what to do about it.

 

Tony: Well, I think this is really important for people to know because it’s common knowledge in the medical field now, it’s pretty much agreed upon, genes are not your destiny. Think of your genes. You know, you have, what is it, 3.2 billion? Is it 3.2 or 4.2 billion? Instructions from your father and from your mother. And all those letters, the DNA of your body is made up of, and that’s where the genes come from, right? But think of that as the instruction plan. But how could somebody have the same DNA and have such radically different changes? Well, because your epigenome. “Epi” means above. Your epigenome decides which genes get turned on and which get turned off. And so it is the basis of everything. And your epigenome can be affected by being overweight, affected by whether you smoke or not, affected by your sleep patterns, affected by your dietary patterns, affected by radiation. And so it’s the sensitive piece.

 

Think of it this way. Think of it as, like, your DNA or your genes are…they are your…like, the piano. And the epigenome is the piano player. And so what matters is what the epigenome does. And so your lifestyle plays a gigantic role in what’s going to happen there. And that’s why we give you examples of all the things you can do that are simple that turn on or turn off these genes.

 

And, you know, for example, something as simple as going to the gym and using the sauna. They found, there’s a whole series of studies, that four to seven times a week, but four is all you need as a minimum, and you cut your chance of heart attack by over 48%, you cut your chance of stroke by 52%, you make the efficiency of fat metabolism go through the roof. And what’s really nice is for someone who’s not really into exercise, or never has exercised hard and they start to exercise and get all stressed or they injure themself, this is a non-stressful way to get extraordinary results.

 

And so it’s really important to understand that we play a role in what happens there. But that’s also why I told you about sirtuins, those seven master genes. Because those master genes turn things on or turn them off. In fact, Dr. David Sinclair is the doctor from Harvard who’s kind of the best longevity expert in the world. He’s worked with a group of people, their called Yamanaka factors, it’s complex but it’s a version of these genes. And they’ve turned them on and turned them off. And they’ve taken mice who have had glaucoma and they’ve lost the nerves to see, so you don’t regrow back nerves in the eyes, and they’ve reversed their aging by turning on these genes. Remember I told you it cleans up your DNA and brings back your energy? And they can see again. It’s the first time in human history this has been done.

 

Now, they’re taking what they’ve learned from that and they’re doing gene therapy, like the examples I give where some kids are able to see again. And all of this is at the beginning of the beginning of the beginning. We’re at the base of the curve of this massive growth. There’s going to be more improvements in the next 5 to 10 years then in the last 200 years. So, what you got to do is take care of yourself now so that…you use some of these tools they’ve got right now that serve you, but then there are some coming in the next two or three years that you’re ready for because your body is healthy, or at least in good shape, that can take you to a whole other level.

 

And all of this is not just for you, it’s for your mom, it’s for your dad. You know, I’m a father, I got five kids and five grandkids, right? I want my grandkids to have a great experience just like you, I want my kids. You know, I’m a husband, I’m a brother. You know, so, all those roles are…once you know this information, think of it as the ultimate guidebook. I get a call… You know, I know a lot of humans, obviously, because the nature of my work. But I get a call at least every 10 days to 2 weeks, somebody has got cancer, somebody’s family has got Alzheimer’s, somebody has had a stroke. So, a major reason I wrote this is I wanted to be able to go, “Here’s the best answers on earth available right now for you that you can act on.” And not just give people hope, but give them a plan.

 

Katie: Yeah. And I feel like these more targeted biohacks and these new cutting-edge treatments are so…it’s amazing they’re available now when you have that particular problem. But, to your point, the bulk of this is done in the preventative and in the daily choices that we make. And I know you talk a lot about sleep, I would love to hammer this point just a little because of all the 500-plus experts I’ve had on this podcast, I’m yet to have one single one who says sleep is not critically important, and yet we know Americans are still not getting this piece right. So, what did you find when you started delving into the sleep piece?

 

Tony: Well, I’ll be honest, I was one of those guys that says, “I’ll sleep when I die.” I was a four or five-hour guy. My wife, whole different thing, man. She’s got to have her eight hours, eight and a half wouldn’t be a bad thing. And so it’s always been something like, “Honey, come to bed. Come on, go to sleep.” Right? But my mind turns on really late at night. And so I was working on this book and I was working on the sleep chapter, truthfully, at 6:45 a.m., I’d been up all night and I got to get up in three and a half hours. And I was like, “Okay.”

 

But I met Dr. Walker, who I’m sure you’ve heard of, right? From UC Berkeley. He’s probably the top sleep expert in the world today. He’s the Google sleep expert and so forth. And he just…I’ll tell you he got me, he got me with one study. 1.6 billion people have participated in a sleep study. It’s the biggest study in the history of the world. And I go, “How the heck would that be coordinated?” He goes, “Tony, it’s simple. It’s called daylight savings time, it’s in 70 countries.” And he said, “Here’s what we found. When we spring forward and we lose an hour, that next day heart attacks go up 24% within 24 hours. Car accidents go through the roof. But when we fall back and we gain the hour, 21% of heart attacks are reduced, to give you an idea. And you see a reduction in traffic challenges.” He said, “Tony, it’s like that’s one hour.”

 

Then I dug in deeper. A man who sleeps four or five hours a night usually has a testosterone level of a man 10 years his senior. Well, I’m 62, I don’t want to be 72, right? So, it got my attention. If intimacy is important to you, as a woman or as a man for the woman you love, for every hour less than eight hours that a woman gets, her desire for intimacy drops approximately 14%. So, a woman is getting two or three hours less, “I’m not even interested, there’s no interest. I mean, I love you, but you’re not going to have that experience.”

 

And so, you know, the way you do this, there are some real practical solutions. First, it’s about consistency. You need a specific time that you make as your target, as your goal, that you’re going to go to bed and try to get up at around the same time, if you can, each day. Because the body has rhythms and those rhythms play a huge role in your hormones and your biochemistry and everything else.

 

Second thing is temperature. You know, you may not like hearing this, and you get under the covers to do it, but they want…for you to have the best sleep, ideally you’re between 65 and 67 degrees. Because that cooling causes you to go to a deeper level of rest and sleep. Of course, you can bundle yourself up or whatever the case may be, but that’s what they want the air temperature to be.

 

Thirdly, you really want to block, you know, all the lights that you have, like curtains, or an eye mask is ideal. And, of course, most people today have real problems because they’re looking into the…you know, those blue lights on their phone or on their iPad, and it literally stimulates you to stay awake. So, you can wear these little goggles that are red colored. And they don’t keep you from being able to see anything, you can enjoy it, but allows your brain to start to calm down and go into those states.

 

So, those are just a few little quick hacks that anybody could do. It costs you nothing, but, boy, you know, I work hard now to have eight hours at least in bed. I won’t sleep all eight hours sometimes, I might get five and a half or six, but I’ve never done that in my life and I really feel the difference.

 

Katie: And another area that you have talked about for years and years, and you talk about in this book, as well, is the mindset piece. And I’d love to hear from you on this. Because I’ve seen in the last three years how this played out in my own life firsthand after having certain health problems for a decade, and then watching my mindset shift, and then watching my body catch up to my mindset without any fight or effort at that point. And you talk about how the three decisions that our lives are controlled by, and can you just dive into those? Because I think I didn’t believe it until I saw it firsthand just how mindset, I believe now, is the most important key.

 

Tony: Well, I did some reading about you. If I understood correctly, you have six kids, is that right?

 

Katie: Yeah, six kids.

 

Tony: And I heard you had problems with your thyroid and so forth, and you went on…very much like me, you went on your own journey to find answers? Were you able to solve those then?

 

Katie: Yeah, I no longer have Hashimoto’s, my labs are normal, and I’ve lost 100 pounds. So, yeah, all solved.

 

Tony: Wow, congratulations. I had no clue, congratulations. Well, you know, I love someone who talks about a subject and they’ve actually lived it. So many people just talk about it, right? So, congratulations.

 

Well, the mind, let’s start with the mind. And let’s start, if we could, before I do the three decisions, with how powerful your mind is for healing. Because we’ve all heard or seen of people that had stage three, stage four cancer, and then it’s gone a week later and science can’t explain it. But let’s start with just drugs, for example.

 

Almost everybody understands that, you know, you can take a drug and you can have a reaction, there’s predictable reactions. But in World War II there was this first breakthrough that happened with placebos, they weren’t even known. There was a doctor that was there and he ran out of morphine. And, you know, people are going into shock, he didn’t know what to do. So, the nurse beside him took saline and injected it as if it was morphine, told the people it was morphine. And they not only didn’t go into shock, but their pain went away immediately and they gave them no drugs.

 

So, this fascinated the doctor. And when he came back to Harvard after the war, he was the one who created these studies where usually there’s a comparison to a placebo, because a placebo is supposed to have no impact. But what we found in studies over and over again is placebos sometimes have more impact than the drugs themselves. You know, it’s not talked about a lot because not a lot of money is made from that. But I’ll give you an example. The more intense the intervention, the more…in terms of the placebo, the more powerful its response. So, if I give you a little pill, there’s a certain response. But if you give a big pill, a much bigger one. If somebody gives you an injection, it’s a bigger response. But they’ve even done fake surgeries.

 

So, for example, the Veterans Administration did a study on arthroscopic surgeries. And they did a group where they literally cut them open, the nurses didn’t know the difference, and they cut open the knee and they did nothing to the knee. So, just they got sliced, and sewed it back up. And other people had the surgery. What’s wild is a year later the people who had not had the surgery are doing better than the people with the surgery. Sizably so that the Veterans Administration won’t pay for that surgery anymore. That’s how powerful placebos can be in shifting people. People saying a year later, “No more pain, my knees is working perfect.” And they had nothing to it, except they believe they had this huge intervention.

 

Now, Harvard has done studies where they give you a red pill and they say, you know, “This is an amphetamine,” which would speed your body up, but it’s actually a barbiturate. So, it’s not a placebo, it’s an actual drug, but they tell you it’s going to speed you up, even though the drug is going to slow you down. And people’s biochemistry speeds up, it changes the impact of the drug. And vice versa, they can give you the “barbiturate,” you know, and give you an amphetamine, tell you it’s a barbiturate, and the body makes the shift and it slows down, even though everything in your biochemistry by drug should speed up.

 

So, and then there’s studies done on aging. There’s a doctor at Harvard who was one of the first people that really came up with this concept of mindfulness. She did a study where she took men and women in their 70s and brought them out to this place in the Adirondacks. And built the place where all the pictures and so forth were from 50 years ago. And they were instructed to only speak in real time, they had the news shows from that time, everything. And they spent, I think it was, two weeks, if I remember correctly. At the end of two weeks, they not only looked younger, their blood pressure dropped sizably, there were changes in their caloric intake. I mean, everything about them shifted simply because they had this radically different psychology.

 

Now, let’s talk about COVID. Right? So, what’s the number one risk to COVID, beyond age, being 80 years old? The number one risk is being overweight or obese. Right? I’m sure you know. 79%, 79.8%, 80% of the people who die of COVID were there. That’s something we can do something about. The second one, according to the CDC, and I published this in this book because you won’t believe it unless you read the study, was fear. Because when we get scared, we hyperventilate, we don’t breathe, we don’t get the full circulation, and everything in the body goes crazy.

 

So, you know, I interviewed, you know, Norman Cousins years ago, and he wrote a book called the Anatomy of an Illness. He was a UCLA professor who really was the first person to really create breakthroughs in psychoneuroimmunology, how your mind, “psycho,” affects your immune system. And he was diagnosed with this deadly disease and his thing was, “I’m not going to take these drugs. I’m going to change my biochemistry by laughing.” And he would sit, whenever the pain came on, and watch two or three of these funny things until he was hysterically laughing, and he cured himself of it. And there was a building at UCLA built on him in psychoneuroimmunology he’s really one of the founders of.

 

So, when I was interviewing him, this is years ago, decades ago, he told me the story that we can also make ourselves sick with our mind alone, which I think everybody intuitively knows. But he gave examples. One of the best examples was he said, “It also is viral.” I said, “What do you mean it’s viral?” He goes, “Human emotions are viral. You get somebody and they yawn, and then you yawn, too. You know, or they get the giggles, it’s not even that funny to you, but you find yourself laughing, you know.” He goes, “Well, the suggestion of illness is viral.”

 

He goes, “I’ll give you an example.” And he told me the story of a football…a college football game that was going on, he was there. And then someone got really stick, projectile vomiting and so forth. And the doctor on staff came there and tried to ask what he drank, what he ate. And he had gone to the vending machines and bought a Coca-Cola. And so the doctor thought that that was the only source that was unique or different and, “It must be polluted, there must be something wrong in the connection there.”

 

And so they announced across the loudspeaker, “If you please stay away from the vending machines, do not drink any Coke. It’s rotten, it can make you sick.” And sure enough, within five minutes, people were getting sick all over the stadium. They had 12 ambulances there taking people back and forth to the hospital. They finally, after an hour and a half, figured out it wasn’t the Coke machine. And when they announced and told them, everybody got well. Right? So, we underestimate massively what our brains can do in terms of our body and our biochemistry.

 

Now, the three decisions you’re talking about, I figured this out because, you know, I grew up in a pretty tough environment. We had no money and no food, and I had three different fathers. Four in the end, but three that I was really close to. And I remember, you know, one particular Thanksgiving we had no money and no food. And, you know, we weren’t going to starve, we could have saltine crackers and butter, but we weren’t going to have a Thanksgiving dinner.

 

And somebody came to the door and knocked on the door. And my dad and mom were having a really intense argument, saying things that you can never take back. And I have a younger brother, five years younger. Younger sister, seven years younger. And so I’m trying to make them not hear it. I get the knock on the door, I open the door, and this tall man is standing there with, you know, food under…bags full of food under both arms. And he had a pot beside him on the ground with an uncooked frozen turkey. And I said, “How can I help you?” He goes, “Is your father home?” And I said, “Just one moment.” And I was euphoric.

 

And so I went to my dad, “There’s somebody at the door, somebody at the door.” He goes, “You answer it.” I said, “I did, it’s for you.” And so my dad goes to the door, opens the door. And I’m watching because I think he’s going to be the happiest guy on the face of the earth. And he was not a happy man. He saw the man with the food and my dad said, “We don’t accept charity,” before the guy said a word, and went and slammed the door in the guy’s face. And the guy’s foot was right there, so it bounced off his foot. And he’s still holding the groceries and he says, “Sir, I’m just the delivery guy.” He goes, you know, “Everyone has a tough time. And this is someone knows you’re having a tough Thanksgiving and wants you to have a great one.” My dad said, “We don’t have charity,” and he goes to close it again. And this time the guy’s shoulder was there, bounced off again. And then my dad was getting mad.

 

And then the guy saw me. And I’ll never forget like it was yesterday, I was 11 years old, and the guy says, “Sir, please don’t make your family suffer because of your ego.” I thought my dad was going to punch him in the face. My dad’s veins on the side of his neck were looking like they were going to burst. And then he just took the groceries, didn’t say “thank you,” slammed the door, and left.

 

And I was perplexed, to say the least. That would be the nicest word I could use today. I was shocked, I was sad. And I couldn’t figure out, “Why is my dad so unhappy?” And I didn’t figure it out then, I figured it out a few years later. And I figured out that we always make…we’re all making three decisions. Your listeners and viewers are making them right now. Test it out and see if it’s true.

 

The first decision we all make is, “What are we going to focus on?” Now, we don’t always make that decision consciously. About 48% of human behavior is habitual. So, a lot of things we just do out of habit and we’re not even aware of it. But whatever we focus on we feel, even if it’s not true. So, if you’re a mama and, you know, you’re worried about something happening with your kid, every mama knows, and every papa knows, that if you envision the worst possible scenario, your heart is going to start beating, you’re going to feel the fear as if it actually happened. And then you get there and your kid is okay, right? You know, it’s a different experience.

 

So, learning to control our focus is so critical. And I can give you, like, for your listeners or viewers, I’ll give you three quick examples so that they could do a little test for themselves. Because how we focus, what we focus on powerfully affects our biochemistry, how we feel, what we do in our life.

 

So, if I asked your viewers, you know, we all focus on what we have and what’s missing. But if you had to say where do you spend more of your time, focusing on what’s missing or what you have, what would you say? Katie, what would you say?

 

Katie: I feel like, in general, what I have. But I try to be very intentional about gratitude, so I try to keep that top of mind.

 

Tony: Yes. You’d be the exception to the rule. You know, most overachievers, like the most overachieving moms, they tend to focus on what’s missing because they’re always trying to make sure everything is perfect and unbelievable. And when you keep focusing on what’s missing, just think of it as software. You could be the smartest person in the world. If you keep focusing on what’s missing, how are you ever going to sustain happiness? You can’t. Right? So, we all do both. But the tendency is more to focus on what’s missing. And during COVID, it would be very easy to focus on what’s missing, right? And it affects your biochemistry.

 

A second question. Do you tend to focus more on what you can or can’t control? I can anticipate what your answer would be, Katie, but tell me what it is.

 

Katie: I would say this is a recent thing for me, but most of my life probably I would focus on things I couldn’t control. And a lot of kind of delving into stoicism and Marcus Aurelius helped me let go of a lot of that.

 

Tony: Oh, the really great readings from thousands of years ago, it was pretty awesome. Yes, most people focus on what they can’t control. So, imagine what that does to you. All the research shows your self-esteem, I hate that word, it’s overused, but the way you feel about yourself is powerfully affected by do you feel events control you or you control events. And so when you’re constantly focusing on what you can’t control and what’s missing, then you’re going to have a whole lot of stress. You’re going to have frustration, you’re going to feel overwhelmed, you must feel depressed or angry or sad, but it doesn’t matter what drugs they give you. You know, some people all go take an antidepressant.

 

You know, the third one would be, “Do you tend to focus more on the past, the present, or the future?” What would your answer be, Katie?

 

Katie: I’d say it’s hard not to fixate on the future and worry about that, but I try to stay in the present, especially with kids because they’re small for such a short time.

 

Tony: That’s beautiful, I love that. Well, you got the answer. If you’re focused on the past, you can’t change it. So, imagine if you’re focused on what you can’t control, what’s missing, and the past. Those people are always depressed. It doesn’t matter what it is, they’re angry and depressed, they go back and forth between those emotions.

 

And, you know, I ask audiences all the time, you know, like, 20,000, 10,000-person audience, and I’ll say, “How many of you know someone who takes antidepressants and they’re still depressed?” And 90% of the room raises their hand. I said, “Well, that’s because they’re not dealing with the cause of the problem, they’re not dealing with the source. They’re just trying to deal with the effect. And the problem is the source is they’re focused on what’s missing and they’re focused on what they can’t control, and very often focused on the past or making up a future that’s scary in their head. Just changing those three focuses can change everything in your life.

 

So, they’re just habits. So, part of what I teach is how to shift those habits. So, the first decision is so important. And again, most of us make it unconsciously, but you can learn to consciously say, “What am I focused on in this moment with my kids, my family, with my life?,” the more you control that. And what you’re doing is the ideal. Which is, “Let me stay in the present and anticipate the future. But if I live in the future, I miss my kids now, I miss life now, I miss the joy now.” And a lot of achievers in the future. Right? Even for their children and for everything else. So, the balance is there. What you want to avoid is the past, other than if it’s a great memory from the past you’re pulling from that just brings you joy.

 

So, those are just three patterns. But the second decision, Katie, is, “What does this mean?” Like, the minute you focus on something, now your brain has to figure out, “What does this mean? Is…you know, is God punishing me here? Is God challenging me with this issue, this problem? Or is this problem a gift from God?” Depending on which one of those you pick, you’re going to feel…you’re going to have a different meaning, you’re going to have a completely different emotion and a different set of actions. Or, “Is this person, you know, criticizing me, dissing me? Is this person coaching me? Is this person loving me?”

 

One change in that meaning and you’re going to have a biochemical change, you’re going to feel completely different emotionally, and you’re going to behave differently. Right? Is this the end of a relationship or the beginning? If you think it’s the end of a relationship, you’re going to probably treat that person very differently than if you think it’s the beginning of a relationship where, you know, you do anything to light them up and it gives you joy to light them up. At the end of a relationship it’s, “What are they doing for me?” It becomes a transaction.

 

So, the meanings we give are what we focus on first, and then what does it mean. Those two combinations are absolutely critical. And if we don’t take control of it, our lives are affected. Because the third decision, what I’m going to do, is pretty much controlled by the first two. If I’m focusing on what’s wrong or I can’t control, and the meaning I have is, “There’s nothing I can do, it’s all going to fall apart,” then in that emotional place I’m going to do something very different than if I say, “Here’s what I can control, here’s what’s beautiful. And, look, this is…I’m feeling in control to some extent. I can’t control it all, but I can influence things. Here’s what I’m going to do. Your results come from what you do.

 

So, all of this has shifted. I mean, a good metaphor for this would be I had the privilege of learning how to drive race cars years ago. And I got a chance to work with one of the greatest race drivers in the world. And he took me out on this track in this place called Laguna Seca in California that’s very famous for having what’s called a corkscrew. You’re going 120 miles an hour straight at a wall and you have to go around it. I mean, it’s intense.

 

So, he puts me in the car and he says, “Tony, I’m going to show you what a race car can do.” And I’m strapped in beside him. And then he took me on a ride. And I’m usually a kind of adventure-oriented person. I was freaking out, I thought I was going to die. And at the end of it he goes… We were straight at this wall, and he whipped around it. And he goes, “At the end of four days, you’re going to be able to do that.” And I said, “I’m a positive guy and I think you’re crazy.” I said, “I don’t know if I ever want to do this.”

 

And then he taught me something that’s been invaluable outside racing. He said, “Tony, we’re never going to start you out like that. The first thing we’re going to do is put you in a skid car.” I said, “What’s a skid car?” He said, “Well, you’re going to drive. I’m going to be on this side and I don’t have a brake, so you got to drive. But I do have these four buttons down at the bottom where my hand is, you won’t see it. And as soon as you lose concentration, I’m going to push one of those four buttons and it’s going to lift one of the four tires off the ground and we’re going to spin out of control in that direction at 100 miles an hour. 110, 120, depending on where we are.” And he goes, “If you focus on the wall, if you focus on what you’re afraid of, you’re going to hit it.” Because when we’re afraid, we tend to focus on what we’re afraid of, and then we unconsciously steer into it, just like life. And he goes, “What you have to train yourself to do is focus on where you want to go, not what you’re afraid of, even though you’re in a spin.”

 

And I thought, “This is simple, I teach versions of this in some other way. I know what to do.” And I’m concentrating like crazy and we’re driving like crazy, and he goes, “By the way, you know, if we hit that wall, we can die if we’re going too fast. And if we’re not dying,” he said, “you’re going to do damage to this car and you’re going to have to pay for it.” So, he goes, “You really got to pay attention.”

 

So, there’s all this pressure on you. And when you see a race car driver, you don’t fully appreciate, like, every muscle, every nerve is going from concentration. And he looks for that moment when you lose your concentration. It’s kind of like life, life doesn’t hit you when you’re ready, right? It always hits you when you’re not ready.

 

And so, sure enough, I’m driving, I’m concentrating, I’ve been driving forever, and then all of a sudden he pushes the button and we start spinning out of control. Where do I go? Immediately, I go, like, straight at the wall. That’s why, like, if you hear about somebody driving their Porsche on a country road and there’s, like, a telephone pole every quarter of a mile and they hit the telephone pole. Because they’re like, “Oh, I don’t want to hit that,” and they steer right into it.

 

So, I’m literally steering into it. He grabs my face, he shoves it to the left where we’re supposed to turn to. Now, I’m fighting because I want to see the death happen. Right? You know, this is crazy. And so, sure enough, but he holds my head. And so, sure enough, I turn the wheel. And here’s the key thing. When you do the right thing, you don’t instantly get rewarded. You’re 25 pounds overweight, it took you years to do it, and for three days you eat good and you’re, “Oh, why don’t I have the result?,” you know. There’s a lag time. And so even if I’m doing the right thing, we’re still skidding towards it. So, my brain is like, “We’re going to die.” But because he holds my face, I don’t look back. And then, sure enough, the lag time ends and we catch it and we miss the wall. It felt like 12 inches, it was probably more like 6 feet, right? But it felt like 12 inches.

 

And so he looks at me and he goes, “Did you learn?” And I said, “I learned.” I didn’t learn squat. The next time he does it, I look straight at the wall. But after practicing enough times, you learn, boom, to focus on what you want, not what you’re afraid of. And it’s a perfect metaphor for life.

 

So, here’s the question, Katie. Question for you. If you focus on what you want instead of what you’re afraid of, are you guaranteed not to hit the wall? No.

 

Katie: No.

 

Tony: No. But if you focus on the wall, you’re guaranteed to hit it. So, everything in life is increasing your probabilities. And that’s what this whole book is. It’s showing you all of these cool things that are so simple that you can do that completely change your life. A simple change in sleep, a simple change in diet.

 

I’ll give you an example. There was a study done recently, in the Lancet. People reducing just 300 calories. You know, and most people get overwhelmed. They throw the diet, they don’t eat, they do something crazy. And…you know, and, of course, then your body’s metabolism changes and you gain fat even more easily. We all know the circle that most humans have been through. I used to go through it all the time, I was 38 pounds heavier than I am now years ago. And what they found is 300 calories, that’s like a bagel a day or one Starbucks you don’t drink, in two years, on average, people lose 16 pounds. And everything changes. You know, their blood sugar becomes more balanced, their blood pressure changes.

 

So, there are these little things. There’s all these cool technologies that you could use, but there’s these tiny simple things that you can do that will immediately change the quality of your life if you just do it consistently as a new habit. But the mind, as you said, is the most powerful one. So, please, if you don’t mind, share with me what you did in your head and how it changed you. I’d love to know, if you don’t mind sharing.

 

Katie: Yeah. For me, I think I had done all the physical stuff for so long. And I’m a very systems-oriented person, so I had the spreadsheets and I was tracking macros and I had supplements. But I was ignoring the emotional mental piece that, for me, went back a lot to past trauma. And when I finally dealt with the past trauma, the moment that sparked, it was seeing my 12-year-old daughter see me look at myself in the mirror and seeing it register on her face, that kind of disgust I had for myself, and going, “I am not going to pass this on to her.”

 

And so I started that process of unpacking it all. And it was amazing because when that mindset shift happened, within a few days I had lost like eight pounds, which is biochemically technically not possible. It was that stress weight from being in sympathetic response for so many years. And it was shifting from, “I have to punish my body into looking how I want it to look,” to, “I’m going to work with my body because I love and accept myself, and I’m going to start there.”

 

And it changed everything. I actually now eat more than I used to eat and I fuel my body versus deprive it, and it shifted everything. I found a quote that said, “I said to my body for the first time, ‘I want to be your friend.’ And it took a deep breath and responded, ‘I’ve been waiting your whole life for this.’” And that was kind of what summed up my…

 

Tony: Oh, what a beautiful message. Oh my god, that’s gorgeous. I’m going to share that with people, I want to share your story, Katie. That’s gorgeous. Congratulations. I got to tell you, I’m so thrilled to see you in this role having lived it. There are so many… You know, I helped start the coaching industry, there were no coaches for me. There were sports coaches, but I wasn’t a therapist. And so that was my metaphor. A coach is not better than you, but they have certain life experiences they can help you with because they’re not in the forest, they’re outside it seeing it. Like when I was in sports, coaches were great for me. And there are so many coaches today that haven’t done anything and they’re coaching other people.

 

And so I’m just thrilled, Katie, to hear that you’re not only looking out for moms, which is the basis of our humanity, but that you looked out for yourself and that you’re really making this level of change, it’s just gorgeous. I think you’ve tapped into what I’m sure every mom knows, and me as a dad knows too, and a grandpa knows too. And that is we’ll do more for those we love than we’ll ever do for ourselves. So, you got to use that.

 

Katie: I know I’m not an expert or a doctor in a lot of these areas. And my approach is, just like with my kids, not to have all the answers, but to say, “Let’s ask better questions together.”

 

Tony: You’re my sister from another mother. This is awesome.

 

Katie: Well, I feel the same way about you, you are amazing.

 

Tony: Oh, it’s so gorgeous, so gorgeous what you’re doing here. I’m so glad you’re spreading the word, and I’m so glad you’re spreading the word about the impact of mind and emotions. Because that’s why the last two chapters, if no one read anything else but that, those two chapters, it changes their life. Because you start to see how much that controls you. Because you make your body all perfect. But if your mind and emotions are not there, it’s like, “What do you have?” You have three beautiful children and you love them completely and they love you. But if your primary emotions are fear and frustration and anger, life is fear, frustration, and anger, that’s what your kids pick up. And nobody needs to do that, but finding that benefit for yourself is so important.

 

I do want to mention one more thing, for moms especially. Most women are very familiar with hormone replacement therapy and how important that is, especially as you get into mid 40s and beyond. But there is some brand-new technology they have that really they don’t even talk about as replacement therapy, it’s optimization therapy, or hormone optimization therapy. And if you’ve got somebody in your life, or yourself, or a father or a mother or a husband, these things can make such a difference. You really want to get tested early before there’s a challenge. Because you can make these small changes in hormones can change everything. Energetically, physically.

 

We just had a man come to one of our centers and, you know, he’s listless, and he and his wife have no relationship, and he says he doesn’t concentrate, he doesn’t focus, and thought he had long-term COVID, all those things. And, you know, a doctor told him his testosterone was fine, he was at 225. Well, if you know anything about a man’s testosterone, you know, when you get below 200, it’s really a problem. But, you know, most men, to feel decent, are 700, 800, 900, or 1,000, right? So, you give this guy 700 of testosterone and he’s a completely new man. He lost weight, he’s focused, he’s there with his wife, his energy for his kids has changed.

 

I mean, this happens to both men and women. I think women are more familiar with it for themselves thinking in terms of menopause, but also there’s a lot of poor facts. So, there’s an entire chapter in my book on women’s health written by three experts. I did not write that chapter, I knew that was not going to be my expertise. So, I wanted three brilliant women to share. And it’s got information that’s priceless for women.

 

So, again, I hope people pick up the book. Because, you know, I’m not making a dime on it, I’m giving all the money away. You can help me feed 20 million people and provide some research for Alzheimer’s and cancer, heart disease. But most importantly, you have this guidebook that it would be crazy not to have. Because there’s somebody in your family who’s going to need it and you’re going to have the answers for them when they need it most, that’s what I wrote it for. And it’s literally the cutting edge. Simple things and the high-tech things are all there together.

 

Katie: I’ve ordered several copies to have on hand for exactly that reason. I’ll make sure the links are in the show notes at wellnessmama.fm. For you guys listening while you’re exercising or driving kids around, everything we’ve talked about will be linked there.

 

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Where can people find the book and/or maybe any other books of yours that you think are especially relevant to moms?

 

Tony: They can go to Amazon, they can go to anyplace, and they can also go to tonyrobbins.com. And, you know, sometimes I do events. I just finished an event for 800,000 people for free for six days, so that one is done. But I also do live events that are done digitally now. So, I used to only do a stadium type setup. And I have so many more moms now. Because I built this internal stadium, it’s, you know, 40-foot-high ceilings, 20-foot LED screens, 180 degrees around me. And so I can see every person, I can see the pimple on their face, I meet their children and I meet their husbands. And a lot of women who have been interested in what I do couldn’t do it before, and now they can do it and be home and they get to share it with their family. And their kids are doing things.

 

I did one just recently. And, you know, we have 195 countries involved, people are doing it every hour, literally, across the world and every time zone. And this group was in India, clearly, they both had their punjas on and so forth. And the mom is in there focusing, and the kids are going by. And the dad was obviously upset that she commandeered the big TV, I think. That’s what it looked like. And so he’s kind of folding his arms coming back.

 

And one of the things we do is, you know, we used to do fire-walking at our live events, so now we do wood-breaking. I send the wood and I show you, as a breakthrough metaphor, breaking through. Normally, you know, two years of training, we do it in about 10 minutes. But we show you what to do to make it a breakthrough for your life. And he’s fighting her by the… He’s sitting down beside her, he’s dancing, he’s fighting her for the wood. So, you’d be surprised. If you ever want to come to an event, you know, you can attend for yourself and you may find people that weren’t so interested start to participate, too.

 

Katie: Well, I look forward to doing that in the future. I have learned a lot from you via your writing, and I’m deeply appreciative of you being here and sharing today. It was truly a joy to get to talk to you.

 

Tony: Thank you, I appreciate it, as well. And congratulations on what you’ve done with your body, 100 pounds is amazing. But even more importantly, that love for yourself that will be passed even more down to your children, I really acknowledge and respect you for that. God bless.

 

Katie: Thank you, you as well. And thanks to all of you for listening and sharing your most valuable resources, your time, your energy, and your attention, with us today. We’re both so grateful that you did. And I hope that you’ll join me again next time.

 

If you’re enjoying these interviews, would you please take two minutes to leave a rating or review on iTunes for me? Doing this helps more people to find the podcast, which means even more moms and families could benefit from the information. I really appreciate your time, and thanks as always for listening.

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